About Us


To become the most sought – after multi – faceted tourist destination in Sri Lanka among both foreign and local tourists offering exclusive and memorable experiences.


To capitalize on the existing and potential tourism resources for sustainable development of the province and expanding the horizon for recreational opportunities

Flag of Sabaragamuwa

Vesak Orchid (Dendrobium maccarthiae). Official flower of Sabaragamuwa

Balangoda man (Homo sapiens balangodensis) of the Mesolithic period, Sri Lanka – was named after the archaeological sites near Balangoda, where skeletal remains of this enigmatic being were first discovered. (A line drawing by Dr. EP Deraniyagala)

About us

In Sri Lanka provinces were first established during the British rule for administrative purposes, the present use of the term Sabaragamuwa Province is constituted in 1987 by the Provincial Council Act No. 42 adopted by the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, which was implemented as part of the Indo-Lanka Peace Accord following several decades of devolution of power

demands. However, the regional boarders in Sri Lanka have been subjected to several changes from the ancient times but the present demarcation has been introduced by the British colonial reign. The historical changes have taken place either based on the division demarcated by Kings or in according with the geographical features that were endemic to them. According to historical chronicles, the Kings have demarcated regions to make their governing easy and effective for different state administrative purposes while the geographical features like mountain ranges or rivers naturally separate regions from one another. At present, Sabaragamuwa province consists of two main Districts called Ratnapura and Kegalle, both enriched with fascinating scenic beauty and natural resources. According to the geographical features, Sri Lanka was divided into three main regions as maritime, central The flag of Sabaragamuwa Province – bears a resemblance to the national flag. The image of a lion bearing a whip represents justice and fairness. The sun and the moon at the left and the right side of this flag respectively represent Kegalle District, Sathara Korale. The four sacred fig leaves symbolise the four immeasurable attitudes of Buddhism. and uplands. Four regions as Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western were mentioned in Anuradhapura era. These regions existed between 6th and 9th centuries. At that time Ratnapura and Uva were entirely included into Rohana Kingdom and part from Western province and Kegalle District were attached to Mayaa Rata. When it comes to Kotte and Kandy reigns, parts from both Western and Kegalle Districts were also compromised. It seems that the three korales, Hewagama korale that belongs to Western Province at present, Dehigampala korale and Alugama korale that belong to current Kegalle District, and four korales called Navadun, Kukulu, Kadawathu, and Madi, came under Sabaragamuwa Province during the time of Portuguese. The inscription named Papiliyana and Veragama about Saman Dewalaya in Sabaragamuwa shows that an area about 9 leagues through Denawaka from Ratnapura to Bambarabotuwa was considered as Sabaragamuwa region during the reign of King Parakramabahu VI (1410–1462 A.D.) in Kotte. It is said that seven korales namely Kuruvita, Navadun, Kukulu, Atakalan, Meda, Kadawatha, and Kolonna were regarded as Sabaragamuwa region in the reign of King Keerthi Sri Rajasinhe (1742–1782 A.D.). In the reign of Mahanuwara Kingdom, ‘Tri-Sinhala’ was divided into twelve regions. Among them, Sabaragamuwa was considered as the fifth major region. These twelve regions have been recognized as: Sathara korale, Sath korale, Uva, Mathale, Sabaragamuwa, Thun korale, Walapane and Viyaluwa, Uda Palatha, Nuwara Kalaviya, Binthenna, Thamankaduwa and Vanniya. According to current administrative demarcations, Sri Lanka has been divided into nine provinces. Sabaragamuwa province is one among them. As the borders of Sabaragamuwa province have been subject to change from time to time, it is hard to conclude the exact entity that belongs to it. Geographically, Sabaragamuwa province is richly abundant in mountains and plateaues. Central upland ends from Ratnapura. Scientists accept that corn shape of Adam’s Peak, the highest place of this area, is a “horst fault” that has arisen due to an earth calamity. It has been beautified by the surrounded mountains like Bena Samanala, Denagala Mount, Kunudiya Rock and Lihini Hela. Ratnapura area is located in a valley in between the highlands known as Sabaragamuwa hills and northern mountain range of Central uplands. The parallel range of mountains in north-west and north-east directions is the most significant feature among all the geographical characteristics of this area bordered by Rakwana Mountains from the South. The eastern part of this mountain range that spreads to Balana and Kadugannawa is obviously the western part of Central uplands, abundant in high peaks, slopes, valleys and clefts. A large part of the land from Ratnapura to Kegalle is covered from mountain ranges and single mountains nearly in height of 100m. A part of Aranayake area in Kegalle District belongs to the central uplands and it is pleasing and wonderful to see how the height of mountains gradually slopes down from the eastern border to the west. Both Uva and Sabaragamuwa provinces are very similar in their natural environment. When considering the geographical features as a whole, the central hills of Sabaragamuwa province and the steep side of Rakwana Buluthota precipice seemingly have very high precipitous features. The fact that all the climatic conditions in Sri Lanka can be experienced in one place, Sabaragamuwa, is a very special feature that no other geographical entity in Sri Lanka can offer. During the period of south-west monsoon wind, Sabaragamuwa province receives about 2000 mm to 3000 mm rainfall and only the annual rainfall of Ratnapura District that usually experiences rain for 244 days per year surpasses the limits of 3887 mm. Though these rates change in some years, usually this province finds heavy rain for about 87 days, misty climate for about 46 days per year, a dry climate in the beginning of the year, and thunderstorms in April, May, June and October. King George VI and Views- Adam’s Peak Issued on: 1938- 03-21 A large number of streams flow down from central uphill of the country creating charming waterfalls swelling to the sea as massive rivers. Including a cluster of sub-rivers there are three other main rivers namely Kalu, Kelani, and Walawe. Thus, obviously, the largest flow of water to the sea in Sri Lanka flows through Sabaragamuwa area. Arid climatic conditions can be experienced further interior to the Ambilipitiya area in Sabaragamuwa Province. This area receives rain only in December, January and February per the whole year. The climate of southeast area of Sabaragamuwa Province is equal to that of Dry-zone in Sri Lanka. It is examined that this arid climatecontinues due to the fact that this area mostly situated in the lee-ward side of the island. Both the damp less wind and the extended rainless droughts sharpen the dryness in this geo-zone. When talking about the mineral resources in the Sabaragamuwa Province, gem can be identified as the most endemic and popular resource here. Moreover, gneiss, clay, sand, mica and limestone are other significant resources. Ratnapura is famous for gem. Precious and semi-precious gems like blue sapphire, yellow sapphire, ruby, alexandrite, topaz, and cat’s eye are found in this area. Among all the minerals that are abundant in these two Districts mica is commonly available in both areas. Moreover, Dela, Nivithigala, Kahawaththa, Balangoda, Rakwana, and Ellawala areas are blessed with iron-ore, sand-stones, and clay-stones. Flora and fauna projects are also arranged according to the pattern of geographical relief in this area. In that sense, the ever-green Sinharaja forest in wet-zone becomes a significant national

treasure which is destinated as a world heritage too. Among all the plantspecies in this greenwood, about 7090 plant-species are endemic to Sri Lanka. Large trees which belong to Hora family (Dipterocarpus Zeilanicus) are abundantly available all over the forest. Other than them, underwood creepers and small plants can often be discovered almost anywhere in the forest. Adding to the holistic picture that invites visiters, this forest is rich with various trees like Kina (Red-bark) (Calophyllum tomentosum), Beraliya (Shorea dyeri), Milla (Vitex altissima), Woodapple (Ferronia limonia), Valipiyanna (Anisophyllea zeilanica), Na (Iron-wood) (Mesua ferrea), and Hal (Vateria acuminata). The other reserved forests like Palabathgala, Gurubevilagama, Kudawa, and Weligepola are assessed as secondary forests of Sinharaja national treasure which would measure about 53300 acres of area. Considering the integration of Kegalle District, “Sathara Korale” is comprised with the combination of following Korales; Galbada, Kinigoda, Paranakuru and Beligala. It is situated within the boundaries of Alagalla and Dummaladeniya mountains orderly from east and west of the District, from south Kottiyakumbura border which also borders “trikorale”, from north steep and rocky area including colossal rocks like Deraniyagala, Urakanda, Asupini Falls and Ambuluwawa bordered by“sath korale” in the right bank of Maha Oya. It is said that “Sathara korale” has provided security for Sinhala kings during Chola invasions since ancient times. As chronicles reveal, during one such Chola invasion, King Vijayabahu I has hid himself in Vakirigala rock in Kegalle. Prince Dappula III has also spent his childhood in this area. King Parakramabahu the Great also has spent his childhood in Dedigama for which archaeological evidence still bear witness in the meusium maintained by the Department of Archaeology. Likewise, in relation to the information about Aranayake, it proves that tribes named Naga and Yakkha have settled in this area during ancient times. Hence as folklore indicates, the linguistic combination of Arak + Naga + Yaka has finally formulated the word Aranayaka. Thus, most places in Kegalle District are obscure historical places abundant in temples, vihara complexes, rocks, mountains and waterfalls. Based on sociological, psychological, and biological information about prehistoric human civilization, it is obvious that two of the main kingdoms of Maha Rawan, namely Indragiriya and Chandragiriya belong to Sabaragamuwa. In addition, earliest known evidence of high quality iron and steel production with wind-powered iron smelting technology is found in Samanalawewa and Kalthota in Ratnapura District. It is believed that those steel which was historically referred to as ‘Sarandib steel’ were sent to the Islamic world to produce swards. Further, Sabaragamuwa is also the land of the pre-historic man whose proofs of existence are scattered around the entire Province. There arenumber of stone caves including the Padawigampola stone dolmen in Kegalle District, that evidence the being of an earliest known human civilization. Padavigampola stone dolmen, the only example in Sri Lanka for an structural work by the Stone Age man, itself reveals the ritualistic sun-worship by the Neolithic man. Hence, the immediate reason why the Sabaragamuwa Province can be termed as ‘the cradle of Sri Lanka’ is because it has given the birth place to Homo Sapiens Balangodensis whose archeological evidence traces back to nearly 38,000 years before present. It seems the skeletal remains of the Balangoda Man (Homo sapiens balangodensis) found near Balangoda in the Ratnapura District are reliably dated back to Sri Lanka’s Mesolithic culture, and are believed to be the earliest remaining of the anatomically modernhumans in South Asia. Ten skeletons of this human species about 12,000 years old were also found at Belilena cave in Kitulgala which is located in Kegalle District. The prehistoric evidence found in Batabomba Lena near Kuruwita in Ratnapura District bear evidence for the ‘Out of Africa’ theory which claims that the origin of the anatomically modern humans can trace back to Africa and then they started migrating to other parts of the world. The new excavations that are currently executed by the Department of Archeology reveal that an ancient human civilization have existed in many parts of Sabaragamuwa in parallel with those of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa in Sri Lanka. The cultural values that have immerged based on information explored through modern excavations have already blurred in the limits of time. Also, one of the classic dancing arts in Sri Lanka called Sabaragamuwa dancing, which is endemic to the Province, is now in the edge of extinction due to modernization. Examining believes and rituals of villagers, it is clear that the people who lived in this area have inherited a very old tradition that grew within Sabaragamuwa, which has assumed a great historical heredity in time. Before concluding the introduction it is worthy to examine the names which have been used to indicate Sabaragamuwa Province from time to time. The region’s name “Sapharagama”, which has been used with “pha” aspirate, was found for the first time in Sri Lanka in the reign of King Parakramabahu the Great (1164–1194 A.D.) in Polonnaruwa. Unfolding the historical information of a bygone era, “chulawanshaya” signifies theregion as “Rattecha Saphare” with the same aspirate “pha”. In another section, it documents the page as “Sapharaggamaratasming”. The name “Sabaragamu” can be seen in an indenture, which was presented in Dambadeniya era reigned by King Parakumba II (1250–1285 A.D.). In “Saddharma rathnakaraya” written during Kotte realm, Sabaragamuwa is indicated as “Saparagamu”. Both names “Saparapura” and “Saparagamu” are mentioned in aide-memorandum called “Sawul Sandeshaya”. The two references “Saparagamu” and “Saparakkhya” are mentioned in the epigraph of Sabaragamuwa Maha Saman Devale. Thus, following various memorandums, indentures, inscriptions and epigraphs, it is definite that the region known as Sabaragamuwa Province today was once referred to as “Saparagamuwa Disava”, “Saparagamuwa Rata” and “Saparapura” in years gone by.

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